from OMAN MBIKO in Bangui, Central African Republic (CAR)
BANGUI, (CAJ News) – REGIONAL leaders have been urged to institute dialogue between rival groups and prevent the Central African Republic (CAR) plunging further into anarchy.
The call by the International Crisis Group (ICG) comes amid several rebel groups, both pro-and anti-Muslim, threatening the holding of polls on Sunday.
As the election date draws near, the militants have hinted at marching to the capital, Bangui, and overthrow the incumbent, President Faustin-Archange Touadéra.
The Belgium-based ICG has urged Touadéra and his rival, Francois Bozizé, to enter into dialogue.
The recent blocking of Bozizé from the elections by the Constitutional Court has sparked the latest crisis as his supporters and a coalition of rebel groups kick against his disqualification.
“Regional leaders should push President Touadéra and Bozizé into talks if the country is to have any chance of holding the election and averting yet more violence and turmoil,” the ICG stated.
It proposed that regional heads of state, including Angola and Congo-Brazzaville, weigh in.
Angola occupies the presidency of the commission of the Economic Community of Central African States.
Congo-Brazzaville has historically been the lead mediator in CAR’s crises and has influence over the country’s political opposition.
The African Union (AU), guarantor of the 2019 peace agreement, could provide technical support for dialogue.
ICG stated the alternative for Touadéra might be widespread rebellion, rendering the country ungovernable for his second term or his eventual overthrow.
The alternative for Bozizé might be military defeat and referral to the International Criminal Court (ICC).to revivitalise the 2019 peace agreement.
A total of 14 armed groups signed it but some have grown impatient at alleged failure by government to implement parts of the agreement, including integrating their fighters.
– CAJ News